The last time I was on a surfboard, I was 15 and in Honolulu for a band trip. Oh yeah, that’s right, 60 something super awkward teenagers set against the backdrop of Waikiki and all its tacky-awesome glory. What could go wrong?
I was nervous about trying the sport, mostly due to my extremely vivid imagination and visions of bathing suit loss, drowning and shark attacks. (I was an anxious teenager.)
I was the last of all of my friends to rent a surfboard from the little beach shack and mine didn’t have an ankle strap. Dude-bro working the hut told me I wouldn’t need it. Dude-bro lied.
From what I can tell, the ankle strap is the most important part of learning how to surf. We all paddled out together and all fell off after the first wave. Without my ankle strap, this part was less fun for me. Every time I bit the dust (bit the wave? bit the surf? bit the sea?), I not only had to make sure that my sweet Esprit bathing suit was still intact, but I had to find and swim over to my estranged board. After taking a time-out from the pack to basically pass out on top of the board and float out to sea (not a great choice) I decided that standing up is preferable to swimming. This turned out to be decent motivation to suck less at surfing, and I got the hang of it by the end of the day.
Pictured: Stephanie Gilmore, world champion surfer. Also pictured: what I thought I looked like when I stood up on the surfboard for the first time.
So now, 16 years later, I want to learn again, in better conditions, and I think I should go to Bali. I have never been to Bali, nor do I know much about Bali, but people seem to like it. There are a few all-lady surf schools that are making me want to jump ship and swim over there now. Since that sounds logistically and physically improbable, I resign myself to day dreaming about gliding through waves like this sea lion.
I want to be a surf camper at one of these gorgeous places:
- I could be a Surf Goddess!!! SURF GODDESS RETREATS
- Oh hello surfing + yoga + spa time…ESCAPE HAVEN
- Yoga and surfing and biking all together sounds like a lot of sweat at THE CHILLHOUSE
Hooray for day dreams.
Top photo: A Well Traveled Woman